After making the NCAA Tournament for the first time in a decade this past spring, Buzz Williams and the Virginia Tech Hokies are looking to build on that success in the 2017-18 season with a deep team that may make the preseason top 25. However, the Hokies' depth has taken a hit.
Senior wing Ty Outlaw has torn his right ACL and will most likely miss the 2017-18 season according to David Teel of the Daily Press. According to Teel, Outlaw suffered the injury on July 11th and has had surgery since then, but it's extremely unlikely that Outlaw will be able to play at all this upcoming season with ACL injuries usually needing at least 8-9 months for recovery and up to a year in some cases.
Outlaw took a medical redshirt during the 2015-16 due to a heart condition and will have to make an appeal to the NCAA to gain a sixth year of eligibility.
Outlaw played sparingly early in the season but after Chris Clarke's season ended to a torn ACL, Outlaw stepped his game up and became one of Virginia Tech's top scorers over the closing part of the season averaging 13.9 points per game over the last 8 games along with 6.3 points per game overall while also averaging 2.8 rebounds per game and making an impressive 49.1% of his three-point attempts. Outlaw's three-point shooting was a huge boost for VT as he became one of America's best shooters from deep while also breaking the school record for the most three-pointers in a single game with 8 against Miami.
The loss of Outlaw is tough for the Hokies especially after he emerged as one of the best three-point shooters in America and was an important part of the Hokies' strong finish to the season. If there is any sort of solace for the Hokies, it comes from the fact that VT has other options on the wing including Justin Bibbs, Ahmed Hill, and Nickeil Alexander-Walker along with being comfortable with playing two point guards at once, something that could see Justin Robinson play with Tyrie Jackson, Wabissa Bede, or Devin Wilson at times next season as they did with Robinson and Seth Allen this past season.
There is no doubt that this is a tough loss for the Hokies that definitely hurts what was going to be a deep team for VT along with costing the Hokies their best three-point shooter.
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